Mont D Olmes Off Piste

Ski-Areas > Pyrénées > Ariège (09) > Les Monts d'Olmes > Off Piste

Freeride Zone

Little known to freeriders the family station of mont d'Olmes hasn't escaped the attention of local off-pisters. The Escapade piste and surrounding forest have been transformed into a secured « freeride » zone. During the winter the Pic du Han forms a barrier to weather fronts moving down from the Atlantic and the resort, situated between 1500 and 2000 meters, can have excellent snowfall. For the more adventurous the descents on the north-west face of the Pic du Han offer open runs between snow covered pine trees.

Pic du Han bowl

From the resort take the lifts to the col de Cadène at 1955 meters, this is the top of the slopes. From here head to the right, just under the north face of the Han to a small pass. The ridgeline can lack snowcover with slabs lower down and it is wise to be prudent for the first few turns. The verdant Pyrenean plain stretches out below, a contrast to the white slopes of the mountain. You are now in a large back bowl and the noise of the ski resort is soon forgotten. Due to the family nature of the resort you will usually have this zone to yourselves. Ski to the north-west to pass through a narrow gorge between the rockbands, this is evident from above. The col du Han is a couple of hundred meters off to your left. At around 1750 meters cross to the left bank of a stream, you now enter into an open wooded section before crossing a flat clearing directly below. Another hundred meters and you join a forestry trail, turn right (east) to rejoin the station after about a quarter of an hour and some polling

The slopes don't exceed 30 degrees so avalanche risk, except under the Pic du Han is low but don't forget the usual equipment of avalanche beacon, probe and shovel. The area is a haven for wildlife including Isards (Pyrenean Chamois) and dormant birds such as rock partridges. Respect.

<< History | Les Monts d'Olmes | Travel >>